How you can motivate candidates to complete an assessment

A candidate-driven market is something that can often prove to be quite challenging. The competition for talent is more intense than ever because everyone is going after the same talent.  

The harsh reality is that the days when you were in the power position of choosing who to hire have ended, now candidates have the upper hand and are the ones choosing where they want to work. That is exactly why candidate experience now is more important than ever before. Candidates expect the application process to be engaging, quick, and easy.

As a result for that, lots of companies don’t even dare to ask candidates to complete an assessment, as they fear candidate dropout throughout the application process.

However, if you motivate the candidates the right way when presenting them with an assessment – you’re guaranteed to not only hire the right best talent but also provide an unforgettable candidate experience.

In this blog, I will tell you about:

  • The two problems you might face when introducing assessments
  • The Solution: time to give something in return
  • This is where Equalture comes into play

So, what goes wrong?

Problem 1. We all fear candidate dropout

Not that long ago, when candidates were plentiful and employers had time to evaluate their options, it wasn’t uncommon for the hiring process to take weeks or even months. 

Today, the labor shortage facing numerous sectors has created a job candidate’s market, where qualified people get snapped up quickly.

So it comes without surprise that many of us are skeptical about introducing an extra step throughout the application process. As that might lead to candidate dropout. It’s something that most founders, hiring managers, and recruiters highly fear. Cause let’s be honest, we all want to have at least some choice when hiring a new team member.

Still sadly, many companies perceive introducing an assessment as an extra filter rather than another way to look at someone’s potential and suitability for a specific job role…

Problem 2. We showcase the benefits assessments bring us, not to the candidates

Alright, so maybe the previous scenario doesn’t apply to you as much. Or maybe it doesn’t apply to you at all.

You in fact are not afraid to introduce an assessment throughout your hiring process, because you are very well aware of the multitude of benefits it can bring to you:

  • Faster & more efficient candidate screening process as you are provided with an already interpreted report for each and every candidate, in a standardized format, saving you a lot of screening time.
  • Assessments allow for a more objective and fair way of screening candidates as everyone applying gets the same assessment.
  • It leads to the improved overall quality of new hires.
  • And on top of that, it also results in increased employee retention and a reduction in costs associated with turnover.

However, what you might probably forget is that even though, yes it is beneficial to you to introduce an assessment, however – are you letting the candidates know what’s in it for them? Or are you just making it seem like it’s an extra step that will just take up more of their precious time without providing anything in return?

The Solution: Be an employer who gives something in return to all candidates

Finding your first job and even more so switching jobs has an enormous impact on your life. After all, we’re spending most hours on work every week. And that also makes applying for a job oftentimes a stressful experience. 

I’ve never heard any of my friends say: ‘Wow, this job application was so fun!”. Instead, most of the time I just hear people complaining about it, and on top of that mentioning that they always feel stressed when applying for jobs.

In today’s world, employers and candidates are equals. Candidates invest time in completing your application process and, thus, it only feels fair that they should get something in return. 

So, if you’re worried that candidates might perceive an assessment throughout the application process as an undesirable aspect, here’s how you can motivate them by transparently sharing how it benefits them as well.

The 5 benefits for candidates

  1. They get their own results – very useful to learn more about yourself. In fact, 52% of candidates prefer receiving feedback, regardless of whether they got hired or not.
  2. Candidates who might fear or feel nervous about not performing well in an interview now have the chance to showcase their talents in a safe, stress-free environment.  Looking for a job is already stressful as is, so why would you make it even more stressful than you need to?!?
  3. Completing an assessment as part of the application process also speeds up things for the candidates as you are able to collect valuable insights early on in the process. This way being able to get back to candidates asap.
  4. Highlight the fact that by completing an assessment, each candidate gets an equal and fair opportunity to showcase themselves.
  5. And most importantly, completing an assessment before getting hired prevents a mismatch, which is even worse for the candidate than for the company. After all, getting a job is a big thing in your life. So as a candidate, you probably wouldn’t want to end up somewhere that isn’t a fit for you. 😉

P.S. The sooner an assessment is introduced, the better

Comparisson between introducing assessments early and late in the hiring process

When initially screening candidates, there are lots of blank spots. After all, a resume or motivation letter might provide you with a first impression, but it doesn’t objectively reveal someone’s skills, potential and fit with your culture. And ironically enough, those are exactly the insights you need to properly assess a candidate’s fit with the job and the company. 

All those blank spots trigger your gut feeling and unconscious biases, resulting in biased hiring decisions. So if you want to create an equal playing field, you should remove the blank spots at the start of your hiring funnel. 

That can be done with assessments.

By introducing assessments at the start of the hiring funnel, meant to help you create a solid first impression of a candidate, the assessment helps you base your hiring decisions on insights that actually determine someone’s success within your company – without getting distracted by insights such as demographic details, which are in no way predictive for hiring success. Moreover, every candidate provides you with the exact same insights on which to base your decisions upon. 

That enables an equal playing field, leading to more diversity. 

Not convinced? Look at the main differences between how introducing an assessment late vs. early in the process can impact your hiring process!

Late in the process Early in the process
Challenges your impressions of someone. Helps you form your impression of someone.
High impact of biases. Low impact of biases.
Low trust in the assessment (as you perceive it only in a way that confirms your initial thoughts). High trust in the assessment as it provides you with an objective first impression of someone.
No contribution to hiring efficiency. Improves efficiency.
No contribution to diversity. Improves diversity.

Just in case you are still skeptical..

FOMO. We all have it. And we all fear missing out on the best candidates out there. I completely get that. In case you are still worried about the fact that introducing an assessment throughout the application process might lead to higher candidate dropout rates – I suggest you start with a small step first. A small step in the right direction.

Let your candidates first apply with LinkedIn for example,  and only then invite them to complete the assesment.

This is where Equalture comes into play

I’d like to explain to you how our product tries to achieve this. Not to sell you our product, but just because examples bring words to live.

At Equalture, we’re on a mission to ensure that every single candidate is treated the exact same way when applying for a job. 

And while ensuring these equal opportunities, we want candidates to have a joyful experience that makes them remember you as a company – through game-based assessments. Don’t take my word for it – check out our Candidate Experience (CX) Report & see for yourself! 😉

And just in case you’re ready to revolutionize your candidate experience – you know where to find us! 

Cheers, Anete.

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